Economic viability of pitaya (Hylocereus sp.) Cultivation in Tomé-Açú Municipality, Pará State, Brazil

João Paulo Borges de Loureiro, Olivia Masako Hanawa Lima, Juliana de Sousa Farias, Adriana Paiva dos Praseres Pires, Marcos Antônio Souza dos Santos, Fabrício Khoury Rebello, Andréia Santana Bezerra


Pitaya (Hylorereus sp.) is a fruit from the botanical family Cactaceae, originally from Latin America. In Brazil, pitaya cultivation is promising due to the fruit’s reputation of being nutritious and having many uses. This study’s objective was to analyze the economic viability of two pitaya production systems in Tomé-Açu municipality, the largest producer of pitaya in the Pará state, Brazilian Amazon. The data were obtained through interviews with two producers, along with field observations of their production systems, which are representative of the cultivation norms in Tomé-Açu. The data were used to estimate the planting and maintenance costs for 1 ha of land using different cultivation methods, identified as: 1) extensive production system and 2) intensive production system. The two systems’ cash flows were estimated over a 20-year period, then analyzed to estimate the net present value, internal rate of return, benefit-cost index, payback period, and break-even point. The intensive production system was found to have a higher implementation cost, due to its irrigation system, while the extensive production system was found to have lower investment and maintenance costs. The economic viability indicators show that both production systems are economically viable, with the extensive production system being more attractive, especially for family farmers who cannot invest in expensive irrigation infrastructure and chemical inputs. In conclusion, the investment in pitaya cultivation is economically viable and constitutes an alternative to agricultural cultivation in Pará state, which can contribute to fruit diversification.

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Journal of Agricultural Studies   ISSN 2166-0379

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